As the world focuses on squashing this pandemic, our focus first and foremost is to keep people safe.
On our side of things, since our employees are all already working remotely nothing much is changing there. Our response times may be a little slower since a lot of our support staff now also have kids at home with them full-time, but we're still processing applications, still here to help you optimize, and still available to answer your questions through our normal channels (firstname.lastname@example.org or the little chat bubble on your dashboard is the best way to reach us).
Mediavine travel/events are suspended until further notice, as we asses the situation.
Earlier this spring, we held a Facebook Live in our group that answers a ton of questions that people have, and we wanted to share that here as well as post a run-down of what was discussed regarding the coronavirus in case you don't have time to watch the video. The Q&A below is not verbatim, so I encourage you to watch the video for additional context and for the other subjects that were discussed (re: Trellis among other things!)
Q: Why is my RPM dropping and how far will it go?
A: Q4 2020 UPDATE: Initially we saw reduced spend due to advertiser reactions to the COVID-19 crisis, but we have since seen things stabilize and even surpass 2019 numbers in some cases! You can read more about the recovery of advertiser spending since the start of the pandemic in this post on COVID RPM Trends.
RPM is dropping likely because eCPM and CPMs are dropping. We do not know how far this will drop, but we don't think we are at the bottom yet and expect things to continue to fall a bit through Q2. The ad markets seem to act in accordance with the stock market usually, but with a delay because budgets are set in advance.
That being said, you are in good hands with Mediavine, and we are altering our strategy to account for this new information and the new projections, so you can be sure that you are earning the most possible when you run Mediavine ads.
Q: Does writing content about coronavirus hurt my SEO?
A: It can, depending on what you are writing and why. Google is trying to prevent misinformation or sensationalistic clickbait from being spread. If you are writing that type of content, Google will likely not send that post traffic.
If you are writing content in your niche and can write about it without mentioning specific keywords (think "Fun indoor activities for kids" instead of "Fun indoor activities for kids during a pandemic/corona/covid-19/outbreak/etc").
Also make sure the content is helpful, accurate, and links to reputable sources if you are distributing informational content about covid-19.
Q: How will writing about covid-19 impact my ad revenue?
A: Advertisers often do "reverse keyword targeting", meaning there is a list of keywords that they don't allow their advertisements to show next to. If you post content with corona-related keywords in the posts, it is very likely that those posts will not earn nearly as well as your other content that does not include those keywords.
If your content is useful for your readers, you can absolutely still post this content. Just use this information as you interpret your ad performance, as sites with significant amounts of traffic hitting corona-related content will likely have significantly lower RPMs than they would if the traffic was hitting other types of content.
The most important parts are the title and the url, so if you are posting content related to this situation and can keep those terms out of those areas, you'll likely see the impact of that reverse targeting reduced.
Words to avoid (if you want the post to earn at peak levels):
- social isolation
- social distancing
- any other buzzwords that start circulating about this ever-changing situation
Disclaimer: This list is our best guess. Actual lists are not available to us, and are not made public by advertisers. Use your best judgement to determine what content you should post on your blog.
Q: What can we DO now on our blogs to help increase performance?
A: Continue posting high-quality content, as you are able. Work on updating old posts that are in your top ~50 as time allows. Make sure they are all well-optimized for ads and follow all of our best practices for post formatting and ad optimization.